Market Notes
November 30th, 2023




    There is a new baby lettuce on the market called Baby Butter Cakes™.  Baby Butter Cakes™ will be a quality replacement for the small green butter and the living hydroponic lettuces for several reasons. First, is taste.  This is a rich buttery lettuce with “teeth”, meaning it holds up in all types of dressings or sauces. The soft crunch makes the leaves perfect for burgers and Dagwoods. Next is the yield.  Baby Buter Cakes™ heads have on average three times the amount of leaves as a traditional butterhead lettuce. Third is size. Over ninety percent of the spineless leaves are the same size. Perfect for decoration and food cost.  Baby Butter Cakes™  come in green and red and are packed 12 heads to a case. There is no mix available at this time.  This is a new product and is planned for year round availability in Central California.  Samples are available for west coast loading.  If you are going to the NYC Food Show you can taste the product yourself at booth 104.   This one is worth checking out.


   Yacon root is now available in the LA market. The South American root grown in China is a sweet alternative to jicama, sweet potatoes with numerous health benefits.  Burgundy truffles are through.  We are at peak of perfection for ripeness for two of the world’s most popular truffles, the White Alba and the Black Perigord. Both varieties are imported from Italy. Quarter pound on the small whites is about six-hundred delivered and it goes from there through medium and large as well.  Top of the scale is about thirty-five hundred for a pound of large White Alba.  Black Perigord are more reasonable and less aromatic. They are under a grand for a pound.  Fingerlings are rolling along smoothly. All colors and all sizes available in both conventional. Prices on fingerlings are steady as is the movement. We expect good supply through early May.  Possible mid-May gap. Rounds showing some post-harvest issues causing additional run time and excessive culling.  Russet are a price game at the moment and everyone has them.

                        NEW PRODUCE QUIZ – WHO AM I ???

    I’m part of a big family, so you may have trouble picking me out from the group.  I’m one of the oldest members of the clan, all the way from the ancient Greeks and Romans.  I’m proud of my heritage and that I arrived aboard the slave ships with those who know how to treat me the best.  My young tender leaves are blue green and prime; the rest of my greens can go to your iguana, but neither of you will want my long stalk.  I’m incredibly prolific – lots of greens from very few plants.  As I grow, if you are kind, you can harvest my outer leaves and I’ll keep growing from the inside out for my entire season.  Or if you’re one of those commercial farmers, you’ll wait till I crown, and then lop off my non-head all at once.  You see, I’m a soul man . . . I’m smooth and young and I just need a good bath.  Then, when you heat me up nice and long and slow, I’m succulent.   Cozy up with me and let my aroma take you down to the pleasures of the south.  Shred my leathery leaves; couple me with some hocks, then serve me up with black-eyed peas.  My smooth, thick, tender leaves are hearty enough to replace meat – Brazil’s feijoada would not be complete without me.  Prepare me with vinegar to get the best flavor.  Full of potassium, calcium, iron, zinc, vitamins A and C, I’m a rich guy for the cool season — you’ll find me year round, but I’m mostly seen December to April.


The answer to this last week’s quiz wasAPPLE… Congrats to all winners.

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© Culinary Specialty Produce, Inc., 2023